The senior army officer took bribes in exchange for fast-tracking transactions for the MP’s businesses
Kuwait has arrested Major General Sheikh Mazen Al Jarrah, assistant under-secretary of its interior ministry, on charges of accepting bribes from Bangladesh MP Md Shahid Islam Papul.
He was detained on Friday, a day after the public prosecution issued a warrant against him, Gulf News reported citing Kuwaiti daily Al Qabas.
Investigators found that Al Jarrah endorsed several transactions when he was the assistant undersecretary for citizenship, passports and residence affairs.
Earlier, the government suspended Al Jarrah on allegations of making a dubious financial transaction with Shahid, now in prison and pending trials for human trafficking and money laundering charges.
Shahid named Jarrah during questioning, which was ongoing at Kuwait’s central prison over a month after his arrest on June 8 as the investigators were trying to ensure that all parties involved are held accountable.
Last week, the National Assembly’s legislative committee agreed to end the immunity of two parliamentary members, Salah Khorshid and Saadoun Hammad, both accused of being involved in the case, according to the report.
Shahid, who travelled to Kuwait as a migrant worker, is now a permanent resident and runs his own business there. He is the managing director and CEO of Marafie Kuwaitia Group, a labour and security contracting company.
His wife Salina Islam is also an MP from a seat reserved for women.
After rumours circulated on social media on Thursday, the Kuwaiti Ministry of Interior put out a statement denying Shahid has Kuwaiti citizenship and that he had been residing in the country legally.
According to local media, Shahid has $16.25 million in assets in Kuwait. Kuwaiti authorities have frozen his bank accounts and companies to ensure that he is not moving money out of Kuwait, Al Qabas reported.
Sources have pointed out that Islam provided services to various governmental agencies, between general trade and cleaning contracts.
According to a report by Al Qabas, 20,000 Bangladeshi workers were brought to Kuwait by Shahid, in exchange for more than 50 million Kuwaiti dinars.